Erik (and others), is there any coordination page where groups could place,
take, or discuss "requests for development" or "requests for maintenance"?

I saw often that sometimes the hard-to-achieve consensus is found, but
there is no way to evaluate the idea further. What now happens is:
- several development proposals materialize through different channels
(community, user groups, idea lab, RFCs, etc)
- there is a general consensus about "project A"
- limbo.... or an IEG, but as Ilario says, that doesn't guarantee its
future viability or integration with current or planned workflows, or
availability of resources for maintenance

It would be more rational to have a further step in the pipeline where
development ideas could be commented, "shot down", or "approved for further
commitment" by the ones who actually can understand how they fit in the
broader product management/life-cycle context (engineering? PMs?
There are often community ideas that on first sight look great, but when
you think about the potential problems, implications, costs, or stepping on
the toes of other developments, that it is more rational not to start them
or delay them until certain conditions are met. But no voice is heard, and
that causes frustration and a sense of disconnection in the community, when
just a single statement "this shouldn't be done because X", would make
everyone more aware of the limits.
And the opposite too, when some idea gather community support and is
green-lighted for further commitment, that would make chapters or other
organizations more confident about what is wanted and how.


On Thu, Jun 26, 2014 at 5:54 AM, Erik Moeller <> wrote:

> Hi folks,
> At the Zurich Hackathon, I met with a couple of folks from WM-CH who
> were interested in talking about ways that chapters can get involved
> in engineering/product development, similar to WM-DE's work on
> Wikidata.
> My recommendation to them was to consider working on GLAM-related
> tooling. This includes helping improve some of the reporting tools
> currently running in Labs (primarily developed by the illustrious and
> wonderful Magnus Manske in his spare time), but also meeting other
> requirements identified by the GLAM community [1] and potentially
> helping with the development of more complex MediaWiki-integrated
> tools like the GLAMWiki-Toolset.
> There's work that only WMF is well positioned to do (like feeding all
> media view data into Hadoop and providing generalized reports and
> APIs), but a lot of work in the aforementioned categories could be
> done by any chapter and could easily be scaled up from 1 to 2 to 3
> FTEs and beyond as warranted. That's because a lot of the tools are
> separate from MediaWiki, so code review and integration requirements
> are lower, and it's easier for technically proficient folks to help.
> In short, I think this could provide a nice on-ramp for a chapter or
> chapters to support the work of volunteers in the cultural sector with
> appropriate technology. This availability of appropriate technology is
> clearly increasingly a distinguishing factor for Wikimedia relative to
> more commercial offerings in its appeal to the cultural sector.
> At the same time, WMF itself doesn't currently prioritize work with
> the cultural sector very highly, which I think is appropriate given
> all the other problems we have to solve. So if this kind of work has
> to compete for attention with much more basic improvements to say the
> uploading pipeline or the editing tools, it's going to lose. Therefore
> I think having a "cultural tooling" team or teams in the larger
> movement would be appropriate.
> I've not heard back from WM-CH yet on this, but I also don't think
> it's an exclusive suggestion, so wanted to put the idea in people's
> heads in case other organizations in the movement want to help with
> it. I do want WMF to solve the larger infrastructure problems, but the
> more specialized tooling is likely _not_ going to be high on our
> agenda anytime soon.
> Thanks,
> Erik
> [1]
> --
> Erik Möller
> VP of Engineering and Product Development, Wikimedia Foundation
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> Unsubscribe:,
> <>

Etiamsi omnes, ego non
Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:

Reply via email to